a few years ago i worked for 6 months in NY, and one time was talking about traveling and looking at the office map, with an american co-worker, then he pointed to Greenland and said a never visited this bit of Canada...i was terribly shocked, but managed to say "friend....that's Greenland it belongs to Denmark", and to increase even more my shock face, he asked "who are they?" to what i answered "Friend i have a lot of work to do with you before getting back to Portugal"...now he knows about geography, and already visited, Denmark (3 or 4 times), the Foroe islands and "that bit of Canada" (Greenland, for not americans), and ended up marring with a Norwegian gril that he met on Denmark.
This guy was well educated guy with a PHD in mathemathics, so i was not expecting that.
I also get asked probably 10-15x a week where I drove here from. So far over the course of 2 years of receiving this question I've had exactly 2 Europeans know that Bahrain is a country and where it is.
One statistic I find interesting is the percentage of USA'ers (not a great term, but I'm no longer happy lumping them in with all other 'Americans') who have passports. According to https://goo.gl/aPCx7D, less than half.
But let's not be too quick to judge. Think of the astonishing range of adventure, culture and geography available to any citizen of the USA WITHOUT requiring a passport, and how far you can travel on an intra-national roadtrip. I suspect that many of those criticizing the septics for their ignorance never do anything so adventurous.
It's very easy right now to be critical of Americans. Trivial, in fact. Just make sure you don't end up being what you claim to despise.
Fewer than half of all Americans have a valid passport. This includes those whose passports have expired. So what? What does this have to do with having knowledge of geography?
I spent a year working in South Korea working alongside Brits, Kiwis, Canadians, etc. I would chat with in the break room. Every single day at work I would converse in English with young students on a range of subjects including geography. Average class size was 8-15 students. I taught five classes a day and the classes would change monthly.
I spent six years living and teaching in Saudi Arabia, 2 years working for a British company where I was the only American, working with many Brits, South Africans, Australians, Norwegians, Nigerians, Filipinos, Egyptians, Syrians, Jordanians, Sudanese, Pakistanis, Indians, Germans, etc.
I left Saudi Arabia and Bahrain in 2014 and began driving. I've been traveling full time since then for almost 4 years. Never spending more than 3 months in the same place. I stay with people I meet through Couch Surfing, or I'll sleep at hostels full of other (mostly European) travelers. I tutored many different European/Turkish/Israeli students along the way.
You still think I've not had hundreds if not thousands of personal experiences with this? Almost every *single* person I met while living as an expat and traveling the past 12 years has asked me where I was from. You think I haven't met 200 people since the beginning of 2007? The "hundreds if not thousands" of experiences claim I made was modest if anything. I've probably got tens of thousands of data points in my head that confirm that people outside of America are horrible at geography, moreso than Americans.
and, yes, I agree 100% we all suffer from confirmation bias. But as I pointed out above my original bias was believing in the bullpoop cliche that Americans are bad at geography. That's what I expected. But it's not so.
Think of it this way. If all countries really are exactly equivalent... let's say person A can name every city in the country of Monaco, and person B can name every city in China. You are saying that these two people have a comparable amount of geographic knowledge.
And... even if it were true that having a comprehensive knowledge about US states were not equivalent to having a comprehensive knowledge about the continent of Europe (it's not true), that is actually immaterial as, amazingly, many Europeans really don't know much about other European countries, either. A Frenchman, for example, probably knows a good bit about France. And they might know some stuff about Germany and the UK and Belgium. But.... press them for information about Ukraine? Greece? Belarus? You'll get a lot of blank stares. On average.
I was talking with a friend about europe and then some random guy starts talking about Tallinn,Riga and Vilnius(the capitals of the baltics),
And then he says this:"the USSR sure does have some great cities!"
And in my mind i think that hes been oblivious since literally the collapse of the USSR.
Nope, that elusive last one was Vatican. Apologies to the 800-odd people I dishonoured...
Aside: it's so weird now the EU to many people here is synonymous with Europe. It seems to me like the issue many people try to make with the USA being referred to as "America," except in this case it's actually a legitimate slight. Because while nobody is confused when you call the United States "America," referring to the EU as "Europe" to the exclusion of all non-EU countries (and sometimes, confusingly, to the exclusion of non-Schengen countries in the EU) is very confusing!
is a Union of EUROPEAN States. By that measure, I believe
that it is wise for England to withdraw from the Union because
the UK is as much a part of Europe as Cyprus is.
Aesthus: -1. Your current total is -5,467 if you're keeping score.
I suck at geography even though I'm 11.
Cyprus is closer to Asia than Europe; thus it makes sense for it to be included as part of Asia. Brits, in particular, have been referring to 'the Continent' (the European mainland) for centuries, which would be rather odd if they could just call it Europe, not being part of it as you claim. Greenland is, indeed, close to Canada...vast uninhabited swaths of Canadian islands and northern land. Meanwhile, it is also not too far from Europe, is part of Denmark, and has been considered part of Europe for hundreds of years. Malta and Ireland have similar reasons to be part of Europe - both are just a few hundred miles at most from the mainland and much further away from other continents. And Iceland is (under the definition that the northern reaches and distant islands of Canada shouldn't really count under the circumstances) much closer to Europe.
yes im bragging
it took 6 Months to get Below 3:40!
I can die peacefully now
Also 45 with 3:40 remaining. Fun quiz!
i think the quiz time should be reduced to make it more of a challenge
Why not accepting also the annexation of Austria, Sudetenland and Poland by Nazi Germany?